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The Future is?

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  • The Future is?

    Hi all,

    I wanted to write up a post here about something that is very important to the future of this forum. Forums today are in decline thanks in part to social media like facebook but also just because consumers of online information have become more and more accustomed to brevity. We text now in broken sentences and emojis and slang. We consume information in "tweets" which are constrained to an arbitrary 280-character limit. We have been conditioned to using the "like" button. Instead of engaging in dialogue, we have been spoon fed content through video services like You-tube and my personal non-favorite, Tiktok. Even the content we consume is curated for us by mega info brokers like Google. I find all this disturbing but it is what it is. That's where we are today, tomorrow will be something else I am sure.

    Where then does a forum fit in? Honestly it doesn't. Its a totally different creature. Its a place where you can have a detailed discussion on topics of interest. Its a Place where you can re-visit discussions that happened years ago and pick up where you left off. Its a place where you can search for information and read it, without some power hungry tech firm determining what content you get in your searches based on their ad revenue or marketing goals. Its a place where though you can post pictures and videos, the real value is in the information and discussions. That is why a Forum is called a Discussion Forum.

    So whats so important about a discussion forum. Its one of the few places left where you chose the content and you choose the way you express your views. Its a place where you can make a point and link to content or upload content that helps you get your point across. Its also a place where you can discuss differing opinions. A good forum will have rules of etiquette in place that help keep the conversation civil.

    The greatest strength and weakness of a forum is in its membership. Members drive the content and dialogue. Depending on how they post and what they post it can determine the direction and tone of the forum. It can also determine how active the forum is and its staying power.Ultimately the forums membership determines if a forum will thrive or will wither away . I know that many people read here daily, I can see the logs. I can't see what members are searching but I can see that they are searching..which is great as that means the forum is meeting one of its goals...the persistence of information and Discussions relative to Discus and aquarium keeping. The problem, though, is because of the things I have presented in this post the flow of information is one way now. Members have largely become consumers. Very little new content has been generated and when members do generate new content, the communities response and participation is lackluster at best. Even pictures of beautiful discus barely generate dialogue. I'm sure that its a complex problem and thereis more to than I have posted here. I am sure there is also information overload because social media has gotten so pervasive in our lives.

    So my question is a stark one. "The Future is ?????" Whats the future of this forum and others like it? I honestly don't know. I do know what would make this forum healthier is less apathy and more involvement. I'd really like to see members do more than just read a thread. I would really like to see members post more, share their hobby and interact in discussions. I would really like members that are reading here as guests and not logging in and posting content to realize they are harming the forum's future by doing this. To survive so that the forum is here for them to read, it requires their support and involvement.

    So ultimately the forums future is up to all of you. As the forum's owner I will try to drive content and improve the forum. We have several very supportive Team members here too.. Fellow admins Pat, and Brian, Mods Liz and Jake have really kept the forum going for a long time now and we all want that to continue. SimplyDiscus went online in 2002. Thats a really long run for a forum. I would like to see that run continue for years to come... but it won't unless members want that as well.​

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      • #4
        Just wanted to chime in as a newbie on this forum. I totally get what you're saying about the decline of forums and the rise of social media. It's crazy how we've become so used to brevity and quick interactions. But here's the thing, forums like this are so important because they offer a space for in-depth discussions and a chance to connect with like-minded people. It's not just about consuming content, but actually engaging and sharing our own perspectives. That's what makes a forum unique! So let's break the trend and make this forum thrive. Don't just be a reader, be a contributor! Share your thoughts, post pictures, and let's have some meaningful conversations. The future of this forum is in our hands, so let's make it awesome. Oh, and by the way, have you guys tried to buy tiktok views to increase your views and likes? Just curious what you think about it.